Subway FAQ: Unused Express Tracks

From nycsubway.org

There are quite a few express tracks, especially on elevated lines, which are not used.

The Bronx

  • IRT Dyre Avenue Line: Combinations of track and right of way between the flyover and Dyre Ave. In 1998, track work was performed connecting a center track between Baychester Ave. and Pelham Pkwy. This track is utilized solely for the purpose of testing the new R142 rolling stock.
  • IRT Pelham Line: Single center track between East 177th Street and Pelham Bay Park. Part of the track is used for layups for the 6-Express service which originates/terminates at E177th St.


  • BMT Sea Beach Line: One center tracks between 86th Street and 8th Avenue. This was briefly used by the "NX" service in 1967-1968. In 1999, one of the tracks was rehabilitated and the other was disconnected from the line leaving it unusable. The track is used occasionally for reroutes in either direction and possibly equipment testing. In the past these tracks have been used to store rolling stock destined for the scrapper.
  • BMT West End Line: Single center track between 9th Avenue and Bay 50th Street. Occasionally used for reroutes in either direction.
  • BMT Brighton Line: Two center tracks between Brighton Beach and Ocean Parkway. These are used for layups and for terminating/turning Q trains but are listed here since they are a continuation of the express tracks from the Brighton line, and exist through Ocean Parkway station.
  • IND Crosstown Line / BMT Culver Line: Two center tracks on the IND portion between Jay St and Church Avenue (between 7th Avenue and Church, the tracks are in a separate tunnel), and on the BMT potion a single center track between Church Ave. and Avenue X.


  • IRT West Side Line: Single center track between 96th Street and 145th Street. This is technically a storage track at this time.


  • BMT Astoria Line: Single center track between 39th Avenue and Ditmars Blvd. terminal.
  • IND 8th Avenue/Fulton Street/Rockaway Line: On the ex-BMT Fulton El portion, a single center track between Rockaway Blvd. and west of 88th St./Boyd Avenue (the track continues thru 80th St./Hudson St. but leads only to the Pitkin Yard), and two center tracks from north of Aqueduct to south of Howard Beach on the IND Rockaway branch.
  • IND Queens Boulevard Line: Two center tracks between Van Wyck Blvd. and 179th St. Formerly used by E service before opening of the Archer Ave. Subway.

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